Your children’s development is not something that is done by one person. As we like to say here at Grace Village “it takes a village to raise a child”.
So, it’s important to ask yourself, is your childcare centre providing the most unique, well-rounded experience to your child?
Or are they simply going through the motions each day – making sure that each child is fed, quiet and playing with a toy or two to pass the time until you pick them up?
This is an amazing time for your little one. They are undergoing cognitive, physical, and psychosocial development, learning for lifelong skills, abilities and experiences.
Their hearing and vision are developing, followed by their first language skills and higher cognitive functions. Between the ages of two to four, their vocabulary will quadruple.
These are your little ones most formative years. Research shows that children who attend quality preschool and early learning programs are more likely to arrive at primary school equipped with the emotional, social and cognitive skills they need to help them to continue learning, and up to 90 per cent of children’s brain development occurs in their first five years.
One way to ensure their consistent development is to expose your little one to as many cognitive, physical and psychosocial experiences through extra-curricular activities.
Availability of extra-curricular activities
This is why high-quality childcare and early learning centres offer extra-curricular activities such as tennis lessons, soccer, art and music programs and basic language classes on top of their educational program.
Introducing third-party specialist coaches or teachers into the childcare centre to take these additional, specialised classes is a sign your provider has the best interests of your child in mind.
Children use different ways to show their understanding and express their thoughts and creativity. Giving your little one an opportunity to try as many different activities opens their world and their experiences.
And it’s not just the variety of rich opportunities for children to express themselves through art, dramatic play, music, dance. It is also the way they communicate during and after these activities.
By re-telling, creating stories, discussions and negotiations strengthens their learning experience and development.
Towards better development
Preschool-age children develop at a rapid pace. Your child will form more than one million new neural connections each second providing a foundation for future achievement.
By offering a wide range of co-curricular options in early learning centres, your little one builds the blocks for educational achievement, emotional and social competence, lifelong health, mental stability – and creates new pathways to living a worthwhile life as a little human.
For example, 2 to 3 years of soccer in school time will obviously develop a child’s skills, abilities and coordination, and overall their general health at a far more advanced level than the child who sits inside.
It will also teach them physical activity habits early in life and encourage families to engage in regular physical activity.
Nurturing your little one’s individuality and uniqueness.
By exposing your little one to many new activities helps them to explore the world and find their interests and passions.
By encouraging their in-born talents and activities that excite them helps them understand who they are as an individual, in relation to others and to help them express their individuality.
At Grace Village
Children learn a new language using play-based apps called The Polyglots. The apps were designed by language, early childhood and technology experts using ELLA, a proven method of language discovery for preschoolers.
A new language improves literacy, memory and concentration as well as developing social, thinking and digital skills. These language skills carry onto learning at school and teaches them respect for new cultures.
Promoting physical activity & movement
As screen time has begun to play an increasing role in children’s lives, extra-curricular activities teach your child meaningful movement.
Without movement, action and experiences important for brain development and growth, does not occur as easily or effectively.
At Grace Village
As part of our extra curriculum offering, Soccer Pat, runs a weekly structured, disciplined, enjoyable and safe half-hour program of soccer skills for children aged 2-6.
The program involves football skills and fun interaction with others. The children learn skills based on speed and agility, gross motor development and the use of muscle memory.
Time poor families
This is an intensive time of your life with work and family pressures. Families need time and energy to provide the variety and quality of experiences needed for your child’s development.
Early childhood learning centres that offer these extra-curricular programs within childcare time, help your little one enjoy their learning and more experiences, without impacting on family time – a win/win for everyone!
At Grace Village
Our ‘hands-on, minds on’ learning through our Technology and Robotics program, little scientists gain the confidence to ask questions, and the tools to find answers and solve real-life problems.
Using technology and science in interesting activities include Lego robotics and interactive apps that respond to touch both visually and through sound.
These programs, as well as developing, engaging and motivating interest in learning science and engineering related subjects use bricks, model reality, conducting investigations and design skills.
Ask what your child care centre offers
The next time you are picking up your child, ask your centre director “what extra-curricular activities do you offer?”.
If the answer is none, perhaps they are not offering your child the best experience or early learning development opportunities, and you could be getting more!